DC Triumph RR, Bolsters Playoff Chances

The win sees DC jump to fifth place in the points table and are now tied with Lucknow Super Giants, Sunrisers Hyderabad and Chennai Super Kings at 12 points…reports Asian Lite News

Kuldeep Yadav and Mukesh Kumar bowled superb spells as bowlers came to the fore as Delhi Capitals kept alive their hopes of reaching the Playoffs of Indian Premier League (IPL) 2024 with a 20-run win over Rajasthan Royals at the Arun Jaitley Stadium here on Tuesday.

After Jake Fraser-McGurk and Abishek Porel slammed fifties in contrasting fashion, while Tristan Stubbs applied finishing touches with a 20-ball 41 to propel Delhi Capitals to 221/8, Kuldeep and Mukesh bowled decisive spells of 2-25 and 2-30 respectively to restrict Rajasthan Royals to 201/8.

The win sees DC jump to fifth place in the points table and are now tied with Lucknow Super Giants, Sunrisers Hyderabad and Chennai Super Kings at 12 points. It is also the second straight time that RR, despite a brilliant 86 from captain Sanju Samson, have failed to complete a chase and need to wait longer to seal their Playoff spot.

Khaleel Ahmed struck in his first over as he had Yashasvi Jaiswal miscuing a slower bouncer to mid-off. Sanju Samson upped the ante with sublime timing on his loft, drive, flat-batted smashes, punch, flick and piercing the gaps in cover with precision to hit five fours and three sixes in the power-play.

But RR lost Jos Buttler in the last over of the six-over phase, as he chopped onto his stumps off Axar Patel, meaning his catch being dropped by Tristan Stubbs didn’t become costly for DC. With Axar and Kuldeep operating in tandem, DC forced a slowdown by giving 25 runs in overs 7-10, though Riyan Parag got two sixes and a four.

That effort paid off as Parag was castled by a slower ball from Rasikh Salam which hit the top of off-stump. Samson went on to get his fifth IPL 2024 fifty in 28 balls by clearing his front leg and smacking Kuldeep over long-on for six off a free hit. Sitting deep in the crease, Samson hit Rasikh for six over long-on, followed by cutting and muscling him for four and six respectively.

With 91 runs needed off 42 balls, Samson just cleared cover off Ishant for four, before Shubham Dubey punched and muscled the pacer for four and six respectively to take 17 runs off the 14th over. Khaleel giving away four wides in an 11-run 15th over meant the equation for RR became 63 runs off 30 balls for the win.

Samson’s fine knock came to an end in dramatic circumstances when Shai Hope took a screamer of a catch at long-on, just millimetres away from the boundary rope off Mukesh. Though he walked up to the umpire in protest, it was in vain as Samson had to depart for 86.

From there, DC came back in the match as Shubham Dubey holed out to long-on off Khaleel. Kuldeep trapped Donovan Ferreira plumb lbw and had Ravichandran Ashwin holing out to long-on in his final over. Despite a slow-over rate penalty in the final over, where DC could field only four fielders outside the 30-yard circle, Mukesh castled Rovman Powell, which was enough to get DC a crucial win.

Brief scores:

Delhi Capitals 221/8 in 20 overs (Abishek Porel 65, Jake Fraser-McGurk 50; Ravichandran Ashwin 3-24) beat Rajasthan Royals 201/8 in 20 overs (Sanju Samson 86; Kuldeep Yadav 2-25, Mukesh Kumar 2-30) by 20 runs

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